When a loved one dies, his or her family must deal with various legal burdens and responsibilities, on top of the emotional stress the loss of a loved one brings. Probate is the legal process through which the deceased’s wishes are validated. Therefore, it is important to learn about the probate process and to hire an experienced lawyer for this matter. Here are some common questions regarding the probate process:

What does probate entail?

Essentially, probate involves determining the value of assets, satisfying leftover debt and taxes, and authorizing the executor or administrator of a will to distribute the remaining estate to the correct heirs and beneficiaries. As mentioned earlier, the probate process also ensures that the wishes in the deceased’s will are carried out faithfully.

How do you file a will to probate?

The executor of the will has the responsibility of filing the document with the Surrogate’s Court in the county where the deceased resided. At this time, the executor also must provide the death certificate, the probate petition, and other supporting documents. The probate petition declares the executor’s identification and a list of heirs. Once filed, the heirs of the estate should receive a citation that will establish:

  • The Surrogate’s Court where probate will occur
  • The rights of all interested parties
  • The executor’s responsibilities (which include filing the will and taking the authority to administer the will)

What are some of the executor’s other responsibilities?

The executor plays a huge role throughout this process, so if you have been chosen, it is important you understand all the job entails. Here is a list of some of the executor’s responsibilities:

  • Collecting and protecting assets
  • Paying taxes and debts of the decedent
  • Allocating assets to beneficiaries
  • Developing and providing a detailed accounting to the court

Once the executor has fulfilled all of his or her duties and obligations, and the beneficiaries have signed off on that fact, the estate can be closed.

Contact our experienced New York firm

The Lauterbach Law Firm provides effective legal services through the probate process. Whether you are the executor of an estate or a beneficiary, it is important to have quality legal support throughout the probate process. We understand the value of peace of mind, which is why we can guarantee that we will consistently fight for your rights. This process is not an easy one for affected families, but we are here to help.

The Lauterbach Law Firm is proud to serve clients throughout Rockland County who are faced with legal matters related to estate planning, real estate, foreclosure defense, landlord-tenant law, business law, and criminal defense. If you require the services of an experienced team of attorneys, contact The Lauterbach Law Firm today to schedule a consultation.